Monday, 20 June 2011

Le Pouce

We're now in those last few crucial weeks. The expression 'make the most of your year' has been springing to mind more so lately. Which has made me think about all those 'little things' I MUST do before I leave. Funnily enough, we have 'A List'. It's quite long. Perhaps it would have been more sensible to gradually do everything. But others plans have nearly always been made at weekends, visiting friends, shopping, going to the beach. However, I think things have turned out for the best. I feel like I'm appreciating everything so much more now that I know my time is short. Maybe, that means I'll enjoy doing everything much more than I would have 2, 5 or 9 months ago.

Anyway, Charlie and I decided on Saturday, with only 6 weeks left, it was time to start doing 'The List'. We chose something perhaps a little out of my comfort zone to start with. Le Pouce (The Thumb). Mauritius is very mountainous and 'Le Pouce' is just one of many erratic looking mountains on the Island.

Lonely Planet - "After about 700m the path starts zigzagging steeply uphill. A 30 minute climb brings you out on a saddle, from where you get your first views over Port Louis. From there it takes another 20 minutes or so walking East along the ridge to reach the base of the thumb. Allow 1 hour for descent into Port Louis".

I don't know what I was expecting but the guide book really didn't do 'Le Pouce' much justice. It didn't say anywhere 'Friggin Amazing! Go Go Go!'. It has to be one of the most breathtaking views I have seen in my life. Charlie and I managed to reach the 'saddle' fairly quickly where we marveled at the vast, lush landscape opened infront of us. I felt as giddy as a school girl, hopping and dancing about! We took a lot of photos. But again, they don't seem to do the actual view much justice. 

I'm just going to comment a little bit on landscape here - and how varied it is. On top of 'Le Pouce', it was basically grass land with lots of green plants and an open area (no trees) which meant we could basically see spectacular views 360o. Descending, it almost became rainforest like, the trees hanging over us and blocking out the sunlight. It was tropical, wet and lush green. There was a hot sticky heat, it must be torturous in summer. And then at the base, near Port Louis it almost became African Savannah. A dry heat, yellowish grass which rattled in the wind and trees which I half-expected to see a Cheetah lazily dangling in. 

But I suppose all this has just reminded me how varied and diverse things are in Mauritius. This time I'm talking about climate and landscape. But the same goes for many other aspects of life here. For example, religion. I could literally walk down one street and see a Tamil and Hindu Temple, Mosque and Christian Church. I've seen and experienced a very diverse way of life. And in any other country, I wouldn't of had the opportunity to experience this 'little bit of everything' that Mauritius is. I'm going to miss this variation and difference in my life.

Anyway, the first of many outings on 'The List' - complete. Hopefully I'll have many more to report.


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